The activity of brain cortex-derived phosphatidylserine (BC-PS) on the neuroendocrine and neurovegetative responses to physical stress was tested in 8 healthy men who underwent three experiments with a bicycle ergometer. According to a double-blind design, before starting the exercise, each subject received intravenously, within 10 min, 50 or 75 mg of BC-PS or a volume-matched placebo diluted in 100 ml of saline. Blood samples were collected before and after the exercise for plasma epinephrine (E), norepinephrine (NE), dopamine (DA), adrenocorticotropin (ACTH), cortisol, growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL) and glucose determinations. Blood pressure and heart rate were also recorded. Physical stress induced a clear-cut increase in plasma E, NE, ACTH, cortisol, GH and PRL, whereas no significant change was observed in plasma DA and glucose. Pretreatment with both 50 and 75 mg BC-PS significantly blunted the ACTH and cortisol responses to physical stress.